Preservation series launches on Thursday

Preservation in May, the community’s annual month-long salute to Biloxi’s colorful past, kicks off Thursday with a lesson for those interested in preserving their own stories.

“Voices: An Introduction to Oral History,” which takes place from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Biloxi Public Library on Howard Avenue will be introduce participants to the concept and importance of oral history projects for families and present how-to instructions.  Refreshments will be served.

The Preservation series picks up each Thursday with the retelling of a significant event in Biloxi’s history or a visit to an area of historical significance.

And this year, the series will actually spill over into June, with a bonus program June 2 where re-enactors will tell the story of the sinking of the Biloxi shrimp boat Emma Harvey a century ago.

This year’s free programs are all on Thursdays, and those who attend three of the four programs – and get their “Passport through History” stamped — will receive a gift at the May 26 program.

They programs are:

May 12, “The Roll Call: Biloxi Wade-in Memorial & Tribute Ceremony,” begins at 5 p.m. at Frank Gruich Community Center, 591 Howard Ave. Recalls the men, women, and children who stood up for equality in Biloxi the late 1950s and ’60s and fought to desegregate the beach. The program will feature presentations by former Gov. William Winters, other dignitaries and witnesses to the protests. Hancock Bank will make a presentation to the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum. A reception will follow the program.

May 19, “Historic East Howard Avenue Walking Tour,” begins at 5:30 p.m. in the Biloxi Library and Civic Center courtyard at 578 Howard Ave. Participants will learn about the eclectic architecture and some of the colorful people who lived in what is the city’s newest National Register Historic District. Tours will be followed by refreshments and displays at the Biloxi Library.

May 26, Biloxi Historical Preservation Awards program, begins at 5:30 p.m. at the Ohr-O’Keefe Museum of Art, 386 Beach Blvd. A reception will follow.

June 2, the 100th anniversary of the Sinking of the Emma Harvey, a bonus program, begins at 5 p.m. in the Parish Life Center at St. Michael Catholic Church, 177 First St. The Biloxi shrimp boat and crew were as lost when a hurricane hit the Coast with no warning. A Mass at 6 p.m. will honor all local fishermen lost at sea.

Preservation in May is organized by the city, Biloxi Bay Chamber of Commerce, Biloxi Main Street District, Biloxi Public Schools, University of Southern Mississippi, and the Local History and Genealogy Department of the Biloxi Public Library.


News and notes

City Council meeting: The Biloxi City Council meets this evening at 6 at City Hall. Among the resolutions on the agenda: A resolution for the city to spend as much as $250,000 toward a federal grant for an elevated pedestrian walkway connecting the Biloxi Transit Center and a new railway platform. To read the complete agenda and supporting documents, click here.

An enduring love affair: The Ohr-O’Keefe Museum of Art is inching closer to the opening of “Our Love Affair with Baseball,” a multi-faceted, multi-media exhibition that runs from May 10 to Nov. 4. In fact, you can even make reservations online for the exhibit’s all-star luncheon series. To see more about the exhibition and weekly Friday luncheons, click here.